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Is your crowning glory less than lustrous these days – or do you simply have less of it? We’ve looked at problems affecting women, from thinning to frizz and dandruff, to bring you expert advice, tips and tricks to revitalise lacklustre locks, whatever the cause

We care about our hair. According to market analyst Mintel, women in the UK spend almost £1.5 billion on hair care products every year (the average woman spends a staggering £40,000 on her hair during her lifetime). With washing, drying and styling, we spend the equivalent of six whole days on hair care throughout the year, and that’s just at home.

Yet many of us, including A-list celebrities, still suffer from persistent problems with our hair, from purely cosmetic blips to more serious medical issues. In fact, according to a study, fewer than 45% of women will go through life with a full head of hair. ‘The hair is a wonderful barometer of general health’, says Glenn Lyons, trichologist and clinical director at the Philip Kingsley Trichology Clinic in London.

We asked hair experts to take a look at the most common hair problems and conditions, and the best fixes for them.

Even pampered women like Kim Kardashian can be subject to bald patches


In September last year, the world’s most famous reality star, Kim Kardashian, was photographed with noticeable thinning of her usually glossy locks. The celebrity had bald patches at the sides of her head.

On this occasion her hair loss was put down to her use of hair extensions, which had pulled on her roots. This happens when the extensions cause the hair follicles to become misshapen and eventually the hair stops growing. However, the star had previously suffered from post-pregnancy hair loss, which can occur in women two to four months after giving birth. In fact, according to the NHS, around 50% of women lose more hair than usual after they’ve given birth.

‘I frequently see new mothers terrified that they’re going bald’, says Dr Dawn Harper. ‘But what’s happening is that our normal hair loss (we lose about 100 hairs from our heads every day) stops during pregnancy. A few months after the baby is born, all the hair that would have been lost in the past year falls out quickly – so the hair loss feels dramatic. But it soon settles back to normal.’

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About Healthy Food Guide

Get clued up on everything veggie with our vegetarian special issue! Find out all you need to know about vegetarian nutrition and eating out, and try our nutritious and tasty recipes. Discover our healthy eating plan for before, during and after a hospital stay, and sort out problem hair with our expert guide to five main conditions. And we've got your winter fitness sorted with new ideas for exercising indoors. Plus, try this month's all-veggie diet planner, warming soups and an extract from Ching-He Huang's brand new book – it's all in this month's Healthy Food Guide.